Paul Scholes believes Manchester United must copy Liverpool and sign a “dominant” centre-back to win the Premier League, namechecking Virgil van Dijk.
The Reds signed the Dutch centre-back in January 2018 to revamp their defence.
Goalkeeper Alisson followed the next summer and Liverpool then won the Champions League before claiming the Premier League title a further year later.
Prior to Van Dijk ‘s arrival, Liverpool’s defence had been the major area letting the team down but the big defender’s arrival proved to be a transformative signing, helping others to raise their standards.
That has been further highlighted by Liverpool’s defensive struggles without Van Dijk this season after the 29-year-old ruptured his ACL in October.
Scholes believes that Manchester United need to sign a defender of Van Dijk’s ilk if they’re to bridge the gap and win the title, just as Liverpool did.
“The biggest worry about the team, for now, they got to the top of the league, they went to Liverpool, a Liverpool team we didn’t realise were struggling as much as they were for the next few games, and they didn’t capitalise,” Scholes told The Robbie Fowler Podcast.
“They were missing out on their centre-backs and it felt United lacked a bit of belief to go on and win a big game and try to win the league.
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“I don’t think they’re that far away. If they need anything, they need a centre-half who is a dominant centre-half. You look at the teams that have won the league in recent years, you look at Vincent Kompany, a leader for Man City, a brilliant defender.
“Van Dijk, a brilliant centre-half and leader, he’s nice and relaxed. United don’t have that but if they get that, I don’t think they’re far away.”